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By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

OSCILLOSCOPE IS HOT FOR A TEACHER

 

Sundance Favorite Scheduled For Release This Year

 

(New York, NY) February 13, 2013—Oscilloscope Laboratories announced today that it has acquired North American rights to Hannah Fidell’s feature directorial debut A TEACHER.  The film premiered last month to critical and audience acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival and is headed to Austin next month where it will play South By Southwest.  O-Scope plans a theatrical, video-on-demand and digital release later this year.

Part psychological thriller and part provocative character study, A TEACHER explores the unraveling of a young high school teacher, Diana (Lindsay Burdge), after she begins an affair with one of her teenage students, Eric (Will Brittain).  What starts as a seemingly innocent fling becomes increasingly complex—and dangerous—as the beautiful and confident Diana gets fully consumed by her emotions, crossing boundaries and acting out in progressively startling ways. Lindsay Burdge delivers a deeply compelling and seamlessly naturalistic performance that brings us into the mind of an adult driven to taboo against her better judgment.

O-Scope’s David Laub and Dan Berger said, “A TEACHER is a remarkably assured debut, and demonstrates two immense new talents, one in front of and one behind the camera. We couldn’t be more excited to welcome the film into O-Scope’s ranks and present it to the world.”

Hannah Fidell said, “We’re so thrilled to be joining the Oscilloscope family.  Their films represent everything we love about cinema and we are honored A TEACHER has found such an ideal home.”

A TEACHER was produced by Kim Sherman and Hannah Fidell.

The deal was negotiated by David Laub and Dan Berger for Oscilloscope with ICM Partners on behalf of the filmmakers.  ICM Partners also represents Hannah Fidell and Lindsay Burdge.

 

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About Oscilloscope Laboratories:

 

Oscilloscope Laboratories is a film production and theatrical distribution entity launched in 2008 by Adam Yauch of Beastie Boys. Yauch modeled the company after the indie record labels he grew up around, choosing films and then releasing them with the same artistic integrity with which they were made.  The company, which is an extension of Yauch’s recording studio of the same name, has an in-house DVD distribution and production arm, and its paper packaging is reminiscent of the heyday of LP record jackets. All of the company’s plastic-free DVD packaging is printed on FSC Certified 80% post-consumer waste paper and produced in a carbon-neutral hydroelectric plant.  Previous and current releases include Lynne Ramsay’s Golden Globe® Nominated WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN starring Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, and Ezra Miller; Marshall Curry’s Oscar-nominated documentary IF A TREE FALLS: A STORY OF THE EARTH LIBERATION FRONT; Oren Moverman’s Oscar-nominated THE MESSENGER starring Ben Foster, Woody Harrelson and Samantha Morton; Kelly Reichardt’s MEEK’S CUTOFF starring Michelle Williams; Evan Glodell’s Sundance hit BELLFLOWER; Kelly Reichardt’s WENDY & LUCY starring Michelle Williams; Anders Østergaard’s Oscar-nominated documentary BURMA VJ; Kurt Keunne’s acclaimed documentary DEAR ZACHARY; Bradley Rust Gray’s THE EXPLODING GIRL starring Zoe Kazan; Scott Hamilton Kennedy’s Oscar-nominated documentary THE GARDEN; Dylan Southern and Will Lovelace’s LCD Soundsystem documentary SHUT UP AND PLAY THE HITS; Ron Fricke and Mark Magidson’s SAMSARA; Andrea Arnold’s WUTHERING HEIGHTS, Matt Ross’s 28 HOTEL ROOMS, and the acclaimed documentaries TCHOUPITOULAS by Bill and Turner Ross and ONLY THE YOUNG by Jason Tippet and Elizabeth Mims.  Upcoming releases include Keith Miller’s Slamdance Grand Prize Winner WELCOME TO PINE HILL, Matteo Garrone’s Cannes Grand Prix-winner REALITY, Todd Berger’s IT’S A DISASTER, starring David Cross, Julia Stiles, and America Ferrara; Rowan Athale’s WASTELAND, Andrew Dosunmu’s MOTHER OF GEORGE, and Omar Mullick and Bassam Tariq’s THESE BIRDS WALK.

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“The core fear is what can happen to you, personally. Your body. That’s what horror films deal with, precisely. We are a very thin skin wrapped around a pumping heart and guts. At any given moment it can come down to that, be it diseases, or somebody’s assault, or war, or a car wreck. You could be reduced to the simple laws of physics and your body’s vulnerability. The edged weapon is the penultimate weapon to disclose that reality to you.”
~ Wes Craven, 1996, promoting Scream

MAMET
Well, that, to me, is always the trick of dramaturgy; theoretically, perfectly, what one wants to do is put the protagonist and the audience in exactly the same position. The main question in drama, the way I was taught, is always what does the protagonist want. That’s what drama is. It comes down to that. It’s not about theme, it’s not about ideas, it’s not about setting, but what the protagonist wants. What gives rise to the drama, what is the precipitating event, and how, at the end of the play, do we see that event culminated? Do we see the protagonist’s wishes fulfilled or absolutely frustrated? That’s the structure of drama. You break it down into three acts.

INTERVIEWER
Does this explain why your plays have so little exposition?

MAMET
Yes. People only speak to get something. If I say, Let me tell you a few things about myself, already your defenses go up; you go, Look, I wonder what he wants from me, because no one ever speaks except to obtain an objective. That’s the only reason anyone ever opens their mouth, onstage or offstage. They may use a language that seems revealing, but if so, it’s just coincidence, because what they’re trying to do is accomplish an objective… The question is where does the dramatist have to lead you? Answer: the place where he or she thinks the audience needs to be led. But what does the character think? Does the character need to convey that information? If the answer is no, then you’d better cut it out, because you aren’t putting the audience in the same position with the protagonist. You’re saying, in effect, Let’s stop the play. That’s what the narration is doing—stopping the play… It’s action, as Aristotle said. That’s all that it is—exactly what the person does. It’s not what they “think,” because we don’t know what they think. It’s not what they say. It’s what they do, what they’re physically trying to accomplish on the stage. Which is exactly the same way we understand a person’s character in life—not by what they say, but by what they do. Say someone came up to you and said, I’m glad to be your neighbor because I’m a very honest man. That’s my character. I’m honest, I like to do things, I’m forthright, I like to be clear about everything, I like to be concise. Well, you really don’t know anything about that guy’s character. Or the person is onstage, and the playwright has him or her make those same claims in several subtle or not-so-subtle ways, the audience will say, Oh yes, I understand their character now; now I understand that they are a character. But in fact you don’t understand anything. You just understand that they’re jabbering to try to convince you of something.
~ David Mamet

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